Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Cultures

School of Media and Communication

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To Cut A Long Story Short: A Guide To Film Trailer Making

Clothworkers’ Building Central, Speakman Lecture Theatre

Movie studios spend eight billion dollars a year producing films in the U.S. This means there are always films, but not necessarily an audience for them and why for every two dollars spent making a film, studios spend another dollar on marketing. The foundation of these campaigns is the trailer which has morphed from its humble 1913 origins into the perfect hybrid of entertaining consumer content and advertising for the product they are selling. How do you boil two hours into two minutes? How do keep feeding hungry online audiences without spoiling the story? What’s with that “foghorn” sound effect and all those fades to black? These and other questions will be answered because remember never judge a trailer by its film.


University of Leeds alum, Sam Cryer, is the founder of INTERMISSION FILM, an audio‑visual creative agency built with the express purpose of providing innovative ways to market world‑class films and entertainment.

Formed in 2012 by the creative minds behind some of the most celebrated trailers of the last decade, Intermission’s team of dedicated editors, producers and graphic designers craft standout campaigns that capture an audience’s attention and imagination.

To date, the company has garnered an array of awards, including Nine Golden Trailer Awards and the Screen Award for “Creative Agency of the Year” and “Trailer of the Year” for three years running. International campaigns include Straight Outta Compton, Beasts Of No Nation, Lady Macbeth, Burberry: The Life of Thomas Burberry and Amy.

Initially based in London, Intermission has recently expanded to Amsterdam and formed a partnership with leading UK and LA based entertainment digital agency ThinkJam.

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